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[19] Captain Mali for his pistol; but before he received it he was shot through the body from behind, the ball entering between the shoulder-blades, passing just above the heart, and coming out through the left lung and breast.

He fell forward to the ground, and there he lay during the night. The horrors of that night let its own darkness cover. Captain Mali says, ‘I never felt so bad in my life before; both Perkins and myself being unable to move, and he lying dying four or five feet from us.’ Sergeant Dunn of the Massachusetts Fifty-sixth found him in the morning insensible from loss of blood; and though at first thought dead, he was at length placed in an ambulance, and had his wound dressed. His father, who had gone to the front to attend to the wounded upon the first news of the battle, met him about two miles beyond Belle Plain at ten o'clock that morning. He was taken on board a transport to Washington, and carried to the house of a friend. His father, warned by the surgeon that the time was short, said to him, ‘Whatever may be the issue, I know from your life and your letters that you are prepared for it.’ He replied, ‘I don't know as to that, father; I have always tried to do my duty.’ His father says:—

He then went on, as calmly as if I were visiting him and about to leave, to give me kind and affectionate messages for his friends. . . . . He gave a most beautiful one for his mother, which I most deeply regret that I did not remember verbatim. He said she was the only mother he had ever known; and had she been his own, could not have been more kind and loving to him, or have had his love more fully. After this I restrained him from talking as much as possible.

He had wished for his mother's and his sisters' hands to dress his wound; and his wish was, at least partly, fulfilled. His youngest sister and a favorite cousin were with him at the last. He knew them both and greeted them in his own cheery way. As always, he was thoughtful for others, and not for himself. Even in his wanderings he spoke only of the regiment or the wounded; no word of his own sufferings, no word of reproach against his murderers.

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Mali (2)
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